4 Analyzing and Interpreting Scientific Data-S

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Analyzing and Interpreting Scientific Data
Analyzing and Interpreting Scientific Data
How can analyzing and interpreting scientific data allow scientists to make informed decisions?
During scientific investigations, scientists gather data and present it in the form of charts, tables or graphs. The data must be properly collected, analyzed, and interpreted to allow scientists to make informed decisions regarding the validity of their study and any further work that maybe necessary to achieve their objectives. The ability to present and use data charts, tables, and graphs correctly is essential for good scientific practice and also prevents unnecessary or inappropriate work and misinterpretation of the data.
Model 1 – Graphs and Charts of Classroom Measurement Data

Pie Chart
Bar Graph

Line Graph
Percentage of Males and
Females by Height
>175 cm
<175 cm
>175 cm
<175 cm
Comparing Male and Female Average Values
200 180 160 140 120 100 80 60 40 20 0
Hand Length
Length in centimeters
Distribution of Height in Males and Females
146-150 151-155 156-160 161-165 166-170 171-175 176-180 181-185 186-190
Height in centimeters
Number of Individuals
9 8
7 6
5 4
3 2
1 0


Activities for High School Biology. According to the data in Model 1, how many females fall within the range 146–155 cm tall?

2. According to the data in Model 1, how many males are 181 cm or above in height?

3. Using the graphs) in Model 1, determine the approximate average height of males and of females.

4. Refer to the data in Model 1.
a. How many males are taller than 175 cm and approximately what percentage of the total is that?

b. Which graph(s)/chart(s) illustrate the answer to the previous question?

5. Which type of graph or chart in Model 1 shows aside by side comparison of data?

6. Which type of graph or chart in Model 1 shows trends in data across an entire data set?

7. Describe two trends in male and female height using the line graph.

8. Use complete sentences to compare the presentation of height data in the three graphs. Discuss any information that is located on more than one graph, and any unique information that is available on each. If you wanted to see if a correlation exists between the height of an individual and his/her hand length, what would be the best type of graph/chart to make Explain your reasoning.

10. What conclusions can you draw comparing the height, hand length, and knuckle width of males and females State your conclusions incomplete sentences.

Analyzing and Interpreting Scientific Data

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